Monitoring the implementation of standards and their relevance is an increasing concern for many international organisations, as demonstrated by the Partnership of international organisations launched by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in 2014 to do just that. Indeed, several international organisations have put a mechanism in place to provide a global view of the implementation of their standards, such as the Observatory
of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). Here are some examples.
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) systematically reviews its standards at least once every five years. National standards bodies (NSBs) are required to answer a survey and the results are then computerised and processed in a dedicated database. At the end of this process, the relevance of the standard is discussed, and it may be amended or even withdrawn .
The International Labour Organization (ILO) has had a Standards Review Mechanism (SRM) in operation since 2015, implemented by a tripartite working group of governments, employers and workers. The group meets once a year and reviews the different standards based on a thematic approach, assigning their status as: ‘up-to-date’, ‘in need of revision’ or ‘outdated’. The group then provides recommendations, including deadlines for follow-up action.
The Secretariat of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) also has a mechanism, called the Implementation Review and Support System (IRRS), which takes place every three years. It has a dual function: to identify obstacles to the implementation of standards and to strengthen capacities .
Although the OIE Observatory is only in the pilot phase, it is already attracting considerable interest from other international organisations. They are closely monitoring how it evolves in terms of function and governance, aspects that are crucial for the effectiveness of its actions. A similar French initiative within the Codex Alimentarius, presented at the 32nd Session of the Codex Committee on General Principles (CCGP32), is evidence of this interest.